The High Cost of Sound Production
- by Peter Friberg
For over twenty years I have been a volunteer at TBL both as a narrator and more recently as a board member. It has been heartening to see the effects that our talking books have had on the lives of people who have a visual impairment or print disability and who are seeking Christian inspiration and literary enjoyment. Many of our readers have reported being lifted up in their faith, or even becoming Christ followers as a result of the talking book medium.
The entire work behind the recording and editing of audio books is arduous and painstaking as there is the commitment on the part of the volunteers to create something of excellence that will minister to the listener.
Currently, in production are over thirty books in various genres that hopefully will be available later this year. To highlight a few, they include titles by familiar authors such as Strengthening Your Grip by Charles Swindoll, The Black Madonna by Davis Bunn, The Family of Jesus by Karen Kingsbury, and White Picket Fences by Susan Meissner. Many of the thirty books are now awaiting resources needed to send them through the editing and sound production process.
Those who are not familiar with the sound production process will discover that audio book production does not stop after the book is narrated. Every word must be checked against the original text, and adjustments must be made to the sound level and quality of every chapter to ensure a consistent and pleasant listening experience. We often face a shortage of volunteers who can do editing, and so much of our staff and organizationals resources go to addressing our growing backlog of unedited books.
Using skilled volunteers, our costs for production of talking books is significantly less than the costs for commercial audio books where in the publishing industry the cost for one book could be up to $10,000. Nevertheless, the pressure to keep up with production is always with us, and we are constantly seeking ways to support this essential aspect of the ministry. We face this need with a confident faith that this is God's ministry and He will help us find a way to bring His message to His followers.
Member, Board of Directors